Update to Proposed New NJLAD Category

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On November 7, 2013, the Senate Labor Committee unanimously endorsed Bill No. S-2995, with amendments.  This bill would add a new protected category - pregnancy - to the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination.  The term “pregnancy” would encompass not only the actual pregnancy, but childbirth and related medical conditions, such as childbirth recovery.
          
The committee amendments include (1) specifying the type of workplace accommodations to be offered; (2) removing the requirement that employers provide leave in each case where accommodation is not feasible; (3) indicating that if an employer can show undue hardship with respect to the requested accommodation, there will be no requirement to provide such accommodation; (4) specifying the various factors to be considered in determining undue hardship; (5) prohibiting pregnant employees from receiving less favorable accommodations or leave than their non-pregnant co-workers who are similarly situated with respect to ability or disability to work; and (6) stating that the bill does not impact employee rights to paid or unpaid leave.